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team 5 min

Andy Cole CBE

An almost 50-year veteran of the Civil Service, Andy is a highly experienced tax professional whom, having trained as a criminal and civil investigator, subsequently held a wide range of senior posts throughout his career, including operational delivery management, strategy development
and project/programme management.

Andy’s previous senior appointments – specifically those at HMRC – have seen him tackle the largest and most complex fraud and avoidance risks using a range of bespoke criminal, civil and insolvency powers, in addition to developing HMRC’s strategy to tackle promoters and users of aggressive tax avoidance. At a point, Andy was responsible for approximately 1700 investigation
specialists, technicians, accountants and insolvency experts based throughout the UK.

In the 2011 New Year’s Honours lists, Andy was commended for his achievements and appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)

2001 – 2004 Deputy Director Special Compliance Office Member of the senior management team with national lead responsibilities for HR, IT, Finance and criminal internal governance investigations.

2004 – 2006 Project Director Project lead for the merger of the law enforcement capability of the former Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise Departments following the creation of Her Majesty’s Customs and Excise.

This strategic redeployment extended to approximately 10,000 criminal investigators across the UK and overseas in addition to the allocation and use of complex and sophisticated sensitive assets with linkage to the creation of the new Home Office Serious Organised Crime Agency.

2006 – 2008 Director Specialist Compliance Teams Overall responsibility for approximately 1,200 investigators providing an operational compliance response to National Minimum Wage, gangmaster and contrived insolvency abuses using a range of innovative civil and criminal powers.

2008 – 2011 Director of Operations Specialist Investigations From 2009 led HMRC’s compliance response to tackling offshore tax evasion and avoidance including the negotiation of the Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility and similar agreements with the Isle of Man, Jersey, Guernsey and Switzerland. These initiatives recovered approximately £3.5bn in unpaid duties to the Exchequer and regularised assets in the region of £15bn.

Worked closely with HM Treasury, Home Office and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to develop the UK’s cross government strategy on global tax transparency including initiatives such as the Automatic Exchange of information through the Common Reporting Standard and public/central registers of beneficial share ownership accessible to law enforcement agencies.

2012 – 2015 Senior Director Specialist Investigations Accountable for the deployment and delivery of approximately 3,000 Investigation specialists, Technicians, Accountants and Insolvency experts based throughout the UK whose primary function was to tackle evasion and avoidance non-compliance by corporates, individuals and organised criminal gangs UK based and overseas.

Approximately 50,000 interventions undertaken producing an annual yield £3-£4bn.

Additionally, a senior member of HMRC’s governance and assurance groups including the Tax Dispute Resolution Board and the Alternative Disputes Resolution Board together with personal accountability for the most complex and sensitive departmental compliance interventions. Also led on the development of HMRC’s strategy to tackle scheme promoters and users of aggressive tax avoidance.

Andy’s achievements were recognised in the Queen’s 2011 New Years Honours list when he was awarded a CBE.

Andy retired from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs on 31 October 2015 after more than 40 years’ public service. He is now an independent tax consultant advising overseas governments and financial intermediaries on global tax compliance developments.

In addition, He provides strategic compliance solutions to a portfolio of UK legal firms advising on client based criminal and civil tax matters.